The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), the leading patient advocacy organization in the U.S. representing 60 million Americans with asthma or allergies, released its annual Fall Allergy Capitals™ report. The report identifies the most challenging places to live with fall allergies among the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. AAFA has published this annual guide since 2003 to raise awareness about the impact of fall allergies; help improve the quality of life for people who experience them by helping people recognize, prevent and manage allergy symptoms; and help communities meet the needs of their residents with allergic diseases.
This year, McAllen, Texas, takes the top spot on our list. The other most challenging cities include: 2. Louisville, Kentucky, 3. Jackson, Mississippi, 4. San Antonio, Texas, 5. Dayton, Ohio, 6. Providence, Rhode Island, 7. Memphis, Tennessee, 8. Syracuse, New York, 9. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, 10. Toledo, Ohio and 11. El Paso, Texas.
Kenneth Mendez, AAFA’s President and CEO notes, “AAFA’s annual Fall Allergy Capitals™ report provides important insights into cities where people are most affected by seasonal symptoms from environmental factors like pollen, use allergy medication frequently and don’t have ready access to board-certified clinicians. Whether you live in an allergy capital or not, it’s important to work with your health care provider to recognize the elements that trigger your allergies and determine the best treatment to enjoy your life unrestricted by seasonal allergies.”
Allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 8.4 percent of U.S. children suffer from hay fever and 10 percent have respiratory allergies. Nasal allergies affect more than 50 million Americans, and the resulting doctor visits, allergy medicines and other factors contribute to more than $18 billion in health costs.
“Too often, people with seasonal allergies suffer silently while their symptoms worsen year after year,” states Neeta Ogden, M.D. and medical spokesperson for AAFA. “Allergy sufferers need to learn more about triggers and visit a specialist for a proper diagnosis and treatment. Often more can be done to relieve allergy symptoms that interfere with daily life.”
About the Research
The Fall Allergy Capitals™ ranking is an annual research and educational project of AAFA, designed to help patients recognize, prevent and safely treat allergy symptoms. Through this ranking, AAFA raises awareness about the impact of seasonal allergies and provides helpful information designed to improve the quality of life for people who experience them. The ranking is based on local pollen levels, use of allergy medication and the number of board-certified allergists in each metro area. Visit AllergyCapitals.com to see the full list, study methodology and to learn more about allergy diagnosis, prevention and treatment.
Celebrating 65 years of service, AAFA is the oldest and largest non-profit patient organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with asthma, allergies and related conditions through research, education, advocacy
and support. AAFA provides practical information and community-based services through its digital communities and network of chapters and support groups. Through its Kids With Food Allergies division, AAFA offers the most extensive online support community for families of children with food allergies. AAFA also helps consumers identify products suitable for those with asthma and allergies through
the asthma & allergy friendly® Certification Program. For more information, visit www.aafa.org.